We may have touched base on this topic once before, but I thought that I’d bring it up again because there may be some confusion about it. Starting tomorrow (Monday, October 1st), the National Weather Service will be implementing storm-based warnings. This is a good thing mainly because it will focus severe weather warnings to specific locations and increase the accuracy of the warning. Up until now, when the National Weather Service has issued severe weather warnings, whether it was a tornado or severe thunderstorm, the warning was issued for the entire county. The storm being warned may have been confined to only one county or parts of counties. For example, if a severe thunderstorm warning was on the border of Wood, Portage and Marathon counties, the warning had to be issued for all of Marathon, Wood and Portage counties. That is a lot of people warned about the storm that didn’t have to be. If you are in western Wood and Marathon counties, there may be blue skies above you leaving you questioning the accuracy of the warning, but the warning still exists and emergeny management has to follow proper procedures regardless of where the storm was actually located and moving. With the new system, if the same thunderstorm warning were in effect for the border of Wood, Portage and Marathon counties, the warning would read something like this…a Severe Thunderstorm Warning is in effect for eastern Wood, western Portage and southern Marathon counties. Note, that this is just an example of a warning, not a real one.
So, how will the storms be represented? Well, instead of an entire county being shaded, only the particular storm will be represented by a polygon. Here at Newsline 9, we’ve already started to implement this system to a point. One way is through our Doppler 9000 Plus. Our warnings show the entire warned county in text format along with the graphical polygon warning for the atual storm, so you can clearly see what storm is severe. The second way that we have implemented this is on our warning crawl system. Even though, the whole county will be shown in the scrolling text, on the radar map, each indivual storm pops us with the radar and polygon area for the particular warning in that county. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment or an e-mail. If you are interested in reading more, click on this link to read more on the benefits of the new storm-based warnings.
Now, onto the current weather situation. Rain and some embedded thunderstorms will continue through the overnight hours, heavy at times. A fairly strong area of low pressure is centered over central Iowa right now and pass through southern Wisconsin by Monday morning, so expect showers linger as you head out to work and school on Monday. Also, there may be some fog developing overnight so be extra careful while you are out driving! Right now, it looks as if our winds are tapering down a bit and with abundant moisture around, that will allow for fog to form. Justin will be back here tomorrow, thanks for reading and have a great night!
Meteorologist Megan Syner
Posted under Science
This post was written by jloew on September 30, 2007